Military of Cameroon

Military of Cameroon
Cameroon Armed Forces
Forces Armees Camerounaises (FAC)
Flag of Cameroon.svg
Flag of Cameroon
Founded 1960
Service branches Cameroon Army (L'Armee de Terre)
Cameroon Air Force (Armee de l'Air du Cameroun, AAC)
Cameroon Navy
Fire Fighter Corps
Headquarters Yaounde (?)

The Cameroonian Armed Forces generally has been an apolitical force where civilian control of the military predominates.[citation needed] Traditional dependence on the French defense capability, although reduced, continues to be the case as French military advisers remain closely involved in preparing the Cameroonian forces for deployment to the contested Bakassi Peninsula. The armed forces number 38,000-40,000 personnel in ground, air, and naval forces.

The Cameroonian armed forces have bases spread all over Cameroon, including in Ngaoundéré. Air Force bases are located in Garoua, Yaoundé, Douala and Bamenda.[citation needed]

"China has an ongoing military-military relationship with Cameroon, which includes training for Cameroonian military students each year in China, technical advisors to assist in repairing Cameroonian military vehicles and naval vessels, and Chinese military sales."[1]



With 20,000 men (including a rate of feminization of nearly 10%) the Army remains the most important component in terms of numbers.[2] The Army is under the responsibility of the Chief of Staff, Général de division Nkoa Atenga, whose staff is in Yaounde.

Currently the organization dates from 2001 with a distribution in several types of units : combat units, response units (unités d’intervention), unités de soutien et d’appui et finally special reserve units as part of 3 joint military régions (interarmees) and the 10 military land sectors.[3]

Army units have been trained and equipped to fight in the swampy coastal terrain facing the Bakassi peninsula. Although prepared for an armed conflict with Nigeria in recent years, the Cameroon Army does not have operational experience against other forces, therefore, it is not possible to assess its ability to respond to changing threats and opposing tactics.

Light equipment


Man Missile Portable

  • SPG-9 73mm
  • B-10 82mmm
  • B-11mm 107 mm
  • M2 mortar
  • M30 mortar on M106

rocket propelled grenade

  • RPG-7V
  • SPG-9
  • M72A3


  • PTS-M amphibious personnel carrier and cargo
  • Lav V-100 commando 4x4 AIFV


  • V150 commando 4x4 amored vehicle
  • RG-32M amored vehicle



Cameroonian Air Force

The Cameroon Air Force has 135 aircraft including 50 helicopters. The air force has bases in Garoua, Koutaba, Yaounde, Douala and Bamenda. The Cameroonian Air Force was founded in 1960 the year of independence form France.There are around 600 troops in the air force.


Aircraft Origin Type Versions Ordered[4] In service Notes
Atlas Impala trainer
light attack
Mk I
One Mk I crashed in Yaounde airbase killing both the pilot instructor and student
Aérospatiale SA 318 Alouette II FRA utility helicopter SA 318C 5 3
Aérospatiale SA 319 Alouette III FRA utility helicopter SA 319B 5 3
Aérospatiale SA 342 Gazelle FRA attack/utility helicopter SA 342L 8 6 One crashed in Bakassi killing both the pilot and a medical personnel
Aérospatiale SA 330 Puma FRA transport helicopter SA 330 5 3
Bell 206L LongRanger USA utility helicopter 206L III 6 2? One crashed in North Cameroon
Bell 412 utility helicopter 412 6 3 One crashed on November 22, 2010 while on a liaison flight between Limbe and Yaounde. Amongst the four casualties who members of the Cameroonian special force unit BIR (Bataillon d'Intervention Rapide) was the retired Israeli Lt-Col Abraham Avi Sirvan, Paul Biya's security adviser.
Dassault-Breguet/Dornier Alpha Jet FRA trainer/light attack NGEA 27 11(?) One was damaged during training exercises
de Havilland Canada DHC-4 Caribou CAN tactical transport DHC-4 2 0 Written off at Douala airbase
de Havilland Canada DHC-5 Buffalo CAN tactical transport DHC-5D 6 0 All grounded at Douala airbase due to lack of maintenance
Dornier Do 28 GER liaison Do 28D 4 0
Dornier Do 128 GER maritime patrol Do 128-6MPA 1 0 Written off at Douala airbase
IAI Arava ISR utility transport Arava 201  ?
Boeing 727 USA VIP transport 727-2R1/Adv 7 0 Still flightworthy, but was pulled out of service
Gulfstream III USA VIP transport Gulfstream III 6 3
Aérospatiale SA 332 Super Puma FRA VIP transport SA 332 5 3
Lockheed C-130 Hercules USA tactical transport C-130H
TJX-AC was written off in France
Piper PA-23 Aztec USA utility PA-23-250F 7
Humbert Tetras France training Tetras 12 12

Air Force Weapons

Cameroonian Navy

Cameroonian navy sailors prepare to perform a visit, board, search and seizure drill on 21 November 2006 in Douala during a joint exercise with the US military.

The navy has two patrol boats. There are about 2100 troops in the navy including Naval Infantry.

Around May 1999, Philip Njaru wrote a newspaper article where he alleged ill-treatment of civilians conducted by the 11th Navy Battalion based in Ekondo-Titi. In late May Njaru was approached by the local captain who asked Njaru "to stop writing such articles and to disclose his sources". Refusing to do this, Njaru five days later found his house encircled by armed soldiers, and escaped to Kumba.[5] Here, he was assaulted by police in June 2001, with no particular reason stated.[5] Njaru complained to the local authorities, but later learned that "his complaint had not been received".[5]

Cameroon's Marine Nationale République modernised and increased its capabilities during 2000 with the acquisition of a number of small Rodman patrol craft and the retirement of some small older craft. A number of small patrol boats have been acquired or ordered from France. Latest estimates indicate naval strength consists of two combat patrol vessels, three coastal patrol vessels and approximately 30 smaller inshore and river patrol craft allocated to both the navy and the local gendarmerie. These include two 135 tonne Yunnan-class landing craft, which are able to carry and launch smaller craft for troop insertions.Some effort has been made to assess equipment needs to bring L'Audacieux P103 and Bakassi P104 to an effective combat status. This has resulted in weapons capabilities being reduced in favour of an increase in serviceability and the service is now effectively without missile attack capabilities. Bakassi (a Type P 48S missile patrol craft) completed a major refit at Lorient, France in August 1999. This included removing the Exocet missile system and EW equipment, and fitting a funnel aft of the mainmast to replace the waterline exhausts. New radars were also installed. Bakassi is now armed only with 40 mm cannon. Although the Bizerte (Type PR 48 large patrol craft) class L'Audacieux is fitted for SS 12M missiles these are not embarked and its operational status is in some doubt, having not been reported at sea since 1995. The Quartier-Maître Alfred Moto patrol boat was listed as out of service in 1991 but was reactivated


NB: Cameroon air force of navy has 85 aircraft


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